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name of North Korea in the country itself is simply known as the Democratic People's
Republic of Korea; north is only used by foreigners in comparison to South Korea,
although both nations claim the entire peninsula. The name Korea is derived from
the name "Goryeo," which was a kingdom on the peninsula that ruled beginning
in 37 BC, but only came to control most of the peninsula in the early 900s.
WARNING: North Korea is unstable,
please read this travel warning
Although most cultures take hundreds, if not thousands of years to develop and become
what they are today, much of North Korean culture
was created over a very short period. Today, North Korea is everything that Kim
Il-Sung brainwashed North Korea to be and that is, unfortunately, an isolated xenophobic
country with so much national and ethnic pride that simply being foreign is an unforgivable
The ability of Kim Il-Sung to brainwash his people came from historic Korean roots,
which focused on honoring elders, respecting their leaders, unquestionably following
those in charge, and a strong ethnic pride.
The historic Korean culture is focused on respect
for elders and comes with a strong sense of discipline and humility. The people
believe honor and respect comes with time, hard work, and a long process of learning.
With this mentality also comes an effort to "save face," which is a desire
to never offend another and gives people an opportunity to maintain their pride,
which is something that takes generations, not years to gain.
The wide red stripe across the
flag represents revolutionary traditions, a common color to represent revolution
in communist and socialist countries. The white bands represent purity, strength,
and dignity, while the blue bands represent sovereignty, peace, and friendship.
The red star is another symbol of socialism.
Name: Democratic People's Republic of Korea
Independence: August 15, 1945
Currency: North Korean Won
Population: 24,720,407 (2013 estimate)
Religion: None, Buddhism, & Confucianism
Additionally, the Koreans have spent much of their
history under foreign rulers and this, like it often does, created a stronger national
pride and identity. This united the people and soon the people began to follow any
ethnic Korean at a point the communists, under the leadership of Kim Il-Sung, came
to power. Kim's leadership was quickly accepted due to this strong national
pride, his leadership, and his strong belief in self-rule.
Although historic Korean ideals allowed Kim to come
to power, it was only Kim and his circle of leader that have altered the culture
since this time, without the people's approval or, in many cases, knowledge.
Kim and his government decided to isolate the people as their focus shifted to economic
growth, however one-side growth as industry became the only market exploited. They
also isolated the people from those abroad, became self-reliant (at least the people
believe they are, plus many other countries have trade sanctions with them), and
began to teach their people lies to maintain power and instill pride.
This isolated state has led to the people of North Korea
being so isolated that they don't know any better than to believe what their
government tells them is true; many of these people have been the victims of lies
from the day they were born. The people are too poor to afford cars or to travel
with any significance as long bus trips, train trips, and flights are too expensive
for anyone to even see their own country. Fear is an integral aspect of daily life
so socialization has diminished as distrust has risen. Luxury goods are not accessible
and even if they were, no one would be able to afford them. Knowledge of the outside
world is limited to lies as fast food, packaged foods, and most technology are unheard
of. People only know as much as they are taught and the North Koreans only known
lies; about the only aspects of their historic culture that survive are their language,
heated floors, a sense of respect, some dress, and some foods.
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